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On Being a Doctor |

What the Stethoscope Said

Bonnie Salomon, MD
[+] Article and Author Information

Dr. Salomon: Deerfield, IL 60015


Requests for Single Reprints: Bonnie Salomon, MD, 53 Crestview Drive, Deerfield, IL 60015.


Ann Intern Med. 2001;135(1):56-57. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-135-1-200107030-00015
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You might think it odd to care about a broken stethoscope—a piece of steel and plastic tubing, an instrument, a mere tool. You might think it overly sentimental to care about a 15-year-old stethoscope, now broken, a dud, not able to transmit the harshest breath sounds or murmur. My stethoscope has come to the end of the line, so to speak, lived out its life expectancy perhaps, and no longer works. It's time to get a new one. So why the fuss? Why bother feeling an emotional attachment to this inanimate but intimate object of auscultation?

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